Interesting to look at, interesting to sit in
An e-208 will be cheaper and quicker
What is it?
It’s a Peugeot that looks like some sort of alien hamster. And we mean that entirely as a compliment. If you’re one of those people who sees faces within the features of inanimate objects, then the e-2008 might look amusing rather than outright beautiful, but at least it draws you in.
This generation of Peugeot 2008 is a damn sight more interesting than its predecessor for a multitude of reasons, and its more bespoke styling is the one that’ll hit you first. Hopefully not literally, but given it now comes with the option of near-silent electric power, that’s surely become a lot more possible.
Yep, the other major new string to the 2008’s bow is its plug-in powertrain. You can still have petrol or diesel power (remember ‘deez-il’?) but of significantly more interest is the e-2008. You’ve just one level of power to choose from for now, but it arrives proven already, appearing in Peugeot’s dinkier e-208 hatchback as well as the DS 3 Crossback e-tense and Vauxhall Corsa-e. A sprightlier Peugeot Sport version might just follow in time.
For now, you get the same mixture of 100kW power and 50kWh battery as its cousins, which adds around 350kg to the 2008 to tip it past the 1.5-tonne mark. But as usual with modern EVs, the extra mass is all in the floor. Better for handling, and it means room for people and luggage is unimpeded too. The fully charged range is around 200 miles, down around five per cent on the skinnier 208 and Corsa.
The other place this larger car squeezes your pocket is with its purchase or lease price, too. Government grants shift all the time, but the cheapest e-2008 is around £28,500 as we write this. Which is £3,000 more than a similarly equipped e-208, but the witchcraft of finance mean you’ll actually part with the same amount of cash each month on lease. At least on Peugeot’s lending scheme, anyway, where the base e-2008 Active kicks off at £375 a month, though we suspect there are better deals to be had from third parties.
It’s also worth noting an entry e-2008 is only around £1,500 more than the cheapest Vauxhall Corsa-e, too. Which may or may not be a hint that this will be cheaper to buy than the electric Mokka that’ll arrive at some point in the future.
Our choice from the range
What's the verdict?
Crossovers don't often impress us: they can't help but feel like fatter, slower, more expensive versions of neat little hatchbacks. And sure, a Peugeot 208 will do much of what the 2008 does, for less money. So you'll have to really want the extra space and ride height on offer here.
Yet with its second attempt, Peugeot has made the 2008 a properly appealing thing in its own right. It looks way more special than it did before, like it's been sketched seperately to its base car where the last one resembled a 208 photocopied at 130 per cent. And with the combination of spangly 3D dials and electric power, it feels futuristic without any Back to the Future Part II naffness.
Crucially, though, if you want an electric car that's as easy to use as its petrol equivalent, the e-2008 is that too.